Woodpeckers adorn Åland franking labels

1 February 2019 sees a new motif series for Åland Post’s franking labels when four common woodpeckers succeed the orchid series. Swedish animal and nature artist Bo Lundwall was chosen to capture the specific characters of the birds.

The four species of woodpeckers adorning the 2019 franking labels are the great spotted woodpecker (Dendrocopos major), lesser spotted woodpecker (Dendrocopos minor), greyheaded woodpecker (Picus canus) and black woodpecker (Dryocopus martius).

The great spotted woodpecker is the most common Åland species of woodpeckers, breeding in all types of woodlands. It has black and white plumage with a bright red patch on the lower belly and feeds mainly on insects and larvae, in the winter also seeds from coniferous cones. The first day cover features “cone smithy” of a great spotted woodpecker. The first day cover features “cone smithy” of a great spotted woodpecker. Wedging the cones into a crevice in the bark it can pick the scales, reaching the seeds.

The lesser spotted woodpecker is our smallest woodpecker. The back is barred in black and white and only the male has a red crown. It chips away at rotten wood to find wood-boring larvae and it thrives in old leafy woodlands as does the grey-headed woodpecker. The grey-headed woodpecker is green and may easily be mistaken for the European green woodpecker, which is larger and does not appear in Åland. The black woodpecker is a species that has increased in numbers of late. It is a rowdy type of bird, and its drummings may be heard at long distances.

Åland Post Stamps sells a series of franking labels with the four motifs. All labels have the same value.

Date of issue1 February 2019
ArtistBo Lundwall
Denomination of series4 x €1.60
Price FDC€7.20
Size56 x 25 mm
Paper40 gms thermal paper
Printing method4-colour offset
Printing houseWalsall Security Printing